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Daycare Center and Family Home Forum>Established Dayhome Adding A Pre-School Program
Wigglesandgiggles 08:39 PM 06-29-2012
I have been running a home daycare for 4 years now. In Sept, a fellow provider will be joining me and we want to offer a preschool program 2 days per week. I don't even know where to start. Ideally, I would like for us to have everything planned and ready to go for Sept, for the entire year.

Where do you purchase your curriculum?

How do you supplement your curriculum?

How do you schedule preschool into a dayhome setting?

What do you do with children under 2 during learning times?

Any additional information you can think of that might be helpful to me?

Preschool/daycare teacher 07:33 PM 07-01-2012
I can try to answer some of your questions. Adding a preschool program probably wouldn't be much different than a regular daycare, but known to be more structured maybe. The one I'm at is a daycare and preschool. Here is my input on your questions:
1. curriculum: I made up my own for two years, and used funsteps one year. There are many curriculums you can purchase already boxed and ready to go each month. When I did the purchased curriculum, I asked parents to pay a monthly curriculum reimbursement fee. I took the total monthly cost and divided it by how many children were enrolled (for us it was $10/month per child). You can just add that fee into your regular daycare cost and avoid having to keep the two seperate. If you do a search for preschool curriculums you will find several (when just starting out a preschool I would recommend doing this until you get used to the extra work involved, and then begin creating your own if you want).
2. Schedule preschool into dayhome setting: We had preschool officially scheduled for 9 am - 11:30 am. The daycare children also needed snack during this time (food program requirement), so we took a break at 10:30 for snack. During this "preschool time" we did: 9 am worship and Bible Story (for a non-Christian daycare, this would be the music and movement time, leading the children in fun songs and movements). 9:15 circle time (where everyone sits down together and we go over months of the year/days of the week, preschool theme related finger plays/songs and a discussion for the day's preschool plans. Your purchased curriculum will probably have this all planned out for you). 9:30 begin preschool activities (your purchsed curriculum will have this planned for you as well). Science, math, language, writing, art, fine/large motor, etc. 10:30 clean up/wash hands/snack. 11:00 potty breaks, prepare for outdoor play, go outside (or indoor free play if it rains or is too hot/cold). 11:30 preschool only children leave.
3. children under 2: For two years we had preschool children in a seperate room from the younger children. This last year we were encouraged to have all ages mixed together (CDA instructor encouraged this). Thankfully by this time we had switched over to being a preschool age only daycare/preschool, so it didn't affect us. Having younger children with us during preschool learning time would be too chaotic and too distracting for the preschool age children, I think.
4. Other information: If you have a sign or website or any other type of advertisement, you will want to add "and preschool" to your daycare name. For example: "Small Hands Daycare" would then be "Small Hands Daycare & Preschool", then send out advertisement stating that you are now offering a preschool program and the information for it. By the way, the first couple years I had preschool for 2 1/2 - 3 yr olds on Tuesdays/Thursdays and 4-5 year olds on Mon/Wed/Fri. The other children who did not have preschool that day would be in the other room with the owner. Last year we combined all 2 1/2 - 5 year olds and did a 5 day/week preschool.
I think adding a preschool to your program will increase your enrollment, and you will be more in demand
If you have any other questions, or want me to explain anything on my input, let me know I love talking preschool
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